One of the most efficient ways people can heat their homes is through air to water heat pumps. These machines use a refrigeration cycle to move heat from cold air to a warm space.
The difference between a heat pump and a traditional furnace is that the heat pump extracts heat from the air, which is why it’s sometimes referred to as an “air conditioner for heat”.
This is much cheaper and more efficient than heating your home with fossil fuels or electric heaters.
Advantages Of Heat Pumps For Your Home
The most common type of heating system in Irish homes is the furnace. Furnaces heat homes by burning fuel, such as oil, gas, coal, or wood, which heats air and transfers that heat to the inside of the home.
Air to water heat pumps, on the other hand, use a mechanical process to transfer heat from one location to another. They work like a reverse fridge, using a refrigerant to draw heat from the air and then releasing that heat to warm another location i.e your home.
In addition, heat pumps can also be set to provide humidity control, which can keep a home comfortable in the winter months. Heat pumps can also be a good option for those who want to reduce their carbon footprint.
In homes, this heat recovery process is used to heat the air inside the home. This prevents the need to use natural gas, oil, or electricity for home heating. For these reasons, homes with heat pumps are more comfortable and have increased property value.
How Do They Exactly Work?
Air passes through the heat exchanger outside called the evaporator and the refrigerant gas absorbs heat from the outside air and evaporates. The vapour passes into the compressor and by compression increases its temperature and pressure. Hot vapour is condensed in the 2nd heat exchanger, the heat is being passed by water onto heating or domestic hot water system. The liquid refrigerant passes back through the expansion valve, reducing its pressure ready to start the cycle again.
Air to water heat pump – can be used in conjunction with underfloor heating and low temperature radiators, aluminium or steel panel or fan coils which require flow temperatures up to 55 °C
Are Heat Pumps Expensive To Install?
Heat pumps are a great way to heat your home in the winter, but they can also be expensive to run. In the past, heat pumps have been much more expensive to run than other heating options, such as furnaces and hot water heaters.
However, advances in technology have made them much more cost-effective to run. Today, you can find heat pumps in a variety of sizes and prices, from small window units to large space heaters.
That’s why it’s important to compare the cost of heat pumps to the cost of traditional heating methods, like electric baseboard heaters.
Generally, air to water heat pumps can cost between €12,000-€17,000 but to determine an exact cost, we would have to conduct a technical assessment which is a detailed heat loss survey of your home.
This step is also required by the SEAI who is offering a grant for air to water heat pumps of €6500.